Zen Luxury. Creating a Garden that is Lush. Easy. Peaceful.

Zen Luxury.  Creating a Garden that is Lush.  Easy.  Peaceful.

Friday, May 21, 2010

May 21 Final Plantings & First Cut

You Got to Move It -- Move It

I got a bit ruthless today as I surveyed my balcony garden. A little "search and replace" was the order of the day.

My first replacement was this poor croton (see below) which suffered massive leaf loss likely attributable to previous heavy rain downpours off the roof. Will it recover? Ugh, it is moved to the ground level public garden along with the leftover coleus. Pulling that broad leafed foliage plant out of my window box allowed a bit more room for the last rex begonia. I also noticed that this last rex begonia was half the size of the one planted 2 weeks ago. A-yup. It needs to be planted.

Continuing on, I do not like the look of the dahlia either as the new flowers are 1/2 the size of the old ones. The plant seems healthy and solid, but it provides me with neither enough foliage or flowers, so dahlia gets moved to the ground level public garden.

I also removed a few plants that require direct (full) sun of over 6 hours per day simply because my balcony does not get that much sunshine. This allowed me to share my bounty with the common grounds at my co-op garden apartments. I found a small patch of sunny area where I planted the leftover petunias, marigolds, lilies and a few other items. Good luck to them. I will be able to enjoy those flowers as I walk by the garden.

Once I got those full sun plants out of my working space, I was able to concentrate on the remainder. Oh, there were lots of plants left still to plant! Yes, I got my two faux stone urns planted. One urn with the yellow hibiscus and the other with a blue hydrangea. Both urns have a few little side plantings. Neither urn looks all that good when I complete the task. What did not help these poor little plants is that I planted both urns LAST night, but I forgot to use the "Air Base" at bottom of urn. Drat! So, I redid my work today. See my product review later in this blog.

I wanted one more box, I call it a stone trough (resin), to be fully planted with shade foliage plants. I planted a Creeping Jenney, a foliage perennial, 2 coleus, one silver orchid and my last remaining rex begonia.

Note to self:

I like the foliage colors on those rex begonias and they are more adaptable than the crotons. Is it the "Moisture Control" potting soil that does not dry out which is causing the fading of all coleus growth? Poor performance from the coleus plants.

I distributed up my nasturtiums and a few other annuals by tucking them into the main planters here and there. They were going to get their own pots, but hey, I'm outta space and outta sunshine.

I also repotted my jasmine from its nursery plastic into a slightly larger clay pot. My original plan was to put this into a larger trough box with other plantings. My plans are altering today because, frankly, that balcony is real crowded!

Is there such a thing as Too Much Abundance?

I will leave out just a few more plants for this weekend. I am anxious to have all the plants situated because I will be away from home for 3 days. That is too long for those little pots to survive on their own. They need daily watering. It may be a good test of the potting soil.

Product Review on Air Base:

I used a product called "Air Base" as an insert in the bottom of two of my "cement" urn planters. Rather than just using a stone, this platform sits above the bottom of the pot and allows not only drainage but some aeration below the potting soil. Found out that fake stone urns are not entirely symmetrical, so the fit was a wee bit odd. I like the product and would recommend it.

Resin Trough

I used a 1/4" drill bit to drill several holes in the bottom of this faux stone box I refer to as a "trough" (since I believe this belongs on the ground due to its straight box configuration). The product is oddly soft and the drilling was easy. I then used that "Better Than Rocks" product in the bottom of the trough to allow for drainage and aeration. Additionally, I inserted a few small plastic planters upside down to simply take up space and insure less soil usage.

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